Last minute Christmas Cake

Fork Last minute Christmas Cake

Cooking time: 150

Preparation: 30 minutes

Cooking: 150 minutes

Serves: 6


The traditional Christmas cake should be made two months before Christmas so you can feed it at regular intervals with brandy, helping to mature the cake. However, if you haven’t got around to it and it’s getting close to Christmas, why not make this scrummy Last minute Christmas Cake instead?


  • 675g (1½ lb) mixed dried fruits
  • 75g (2¾ oz) glace ½ cherries, quartered
  • 1 lemon, zest and juice
  • 1 orange, zest and juice
  • 4 large Bird Brothers eggs, beaten
  • 4 tablespoons dark rum or brandy
  • 225g (8 oz) butter, softened
  • 225g (8 oz) light soft brown sugar
  • 225g (8 oz) plain flour
  • ½ teaspoon mixed ground spice
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 50g (1¾ oz) flaked almonds


  1. Place the first four ingredients in a medium pan. Mix and bring to the boil. Remove from the heat and stir in the rum or brandy. Allow to cool.

  2. Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 3/170°C/320°F.

  3. Grease a 20cm (8 inch) deep round cake tin and line with baking parchment.

  4. Purée one third of the fruit in a food processor.

  5. Cream the butter and sugar together with an electric whisk until soft and fluffy. Then gradually add the eggs, beating well between additions.

  6. Stir in the flour and spices, then the fruit purée, almonds and fruits. Spoon into the tin and level the surface.

  7. Bake for 2 to 2½ hours. Allow to cool in the tin.

Comments and tips
In need of a little inspiration?